He blamed this on the war on terror and the TSA. As a youth he, as did every boy, had a pocket knife. Always. It was expected. There was no school rule against pocket knives. Once for a period they even all had switchblades. You could get them for 99 cents, a large amount in those days, enough to buy a case of 24 Coca-Colas. The switchblades met with school and parental disapproval as they smacked of New York gangs. But before teachers and parents came up with a policy, the boys had abandoned the switchblades. The knives had weak springs. Fascinated with the speed with which the knives opened with a satisfying click and locked the blade into place, the boys quickly wore out the springs on their switchblades. Unlike their trusty pocket knives, the switchblades quickly became useless.
He no longer carried a pocket knife. He had learned long ago that things that go into pockets become habitual. He would forget to take the knife out when he rushed to catch his flight, just as he always forgot to put the knife in his pocket when he went to work in the garden.